GREENWOOD, Ind. – Transylvania University's Renae Morton (Olivet, Mich. / Olivet) has been named the Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference Women's Athlete of the Year following her performances in softball during the 2018 spring season.
Morton finished off a stellar career by leading Division III softball during the 2018 regular season in earned-run average, posting a 0.53 ERA this season. Morton repeated as the HCAC Pitcher of the Year for softball, and was named to the NFCA All-Region First Team and was selected as an All-American for the NFCA Third Team.
Over the course of the regular season and tournament, Morton pitched 150.2 innings, registering 183 strikeouts against 24 walks, posting a 19-7 record along with four saves. In 2018, Morton registered 17 complete games and nine shutouts, including a streak of six straight complete-game shutouts from April 6 through May 4. Her nine shutouts ranked second-most in the country during the regular season.
Morton's work in the circle translated to a 34-9 record for the Pioneers, their third straight regular-season HCAC title and second consecutive NCAA Tournament berth. The senior tied a career-high in single-game strikeouts with 14 versus Franklin on April 10 in a 1-0 10-inning victory. Morton had seven strikeouts or more in a game 15 different times during the season.
The Olivet, Mich. native registered 8.8 strikeouts per seven innings ranked 20th nationally in the regular season. Morton led a defense which ranked second nationally in earned-run average during the regular season and led the nation in strikeout-to-walk ratio (6.53).
The HCAC Player of the Year award is in its fifth year of existence. The award is voted on by the sports information directors of each member institution.
HCAC Women's Athlete of the Year
2014 Bridgette Rowe, Soccer and Track & Field Manchester University
2015 Anna Murdock, Cross Country and Track & Field Franklin College
2016 Terrill Webb, Track & Field Bluffton University
2017 Jordin Fender, Track & Field Transylvania University
2018 Renae Morton, Softball Transylvania University